Quarter of world may not have access to coronavirus vaccine until 2022, study suggests

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Representative Image
Representative Image

New York [US], December 16 (ANI): Coronavirus vaccinations may not reach a quarter of the world's population until 2022, according to researchers who reported on Tuesday.

According to CNN, half of all planned doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been bought up by high-income countries such as the US, Japan, and Australia. Citing a report by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, it reported that these "rich countries" have pre-ordered close to 7.5 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines, enough to vaccinate 3.76 billion people.

"Just over half (51 per cent) of these doses will go to high-income countries, which represent 14 percent of the world's population," they wrote in their report, published in the BMJ as quoted by CNN.

The US accounted for one-fifth of all global Covid-19 cases but had reserved 800 million doses of vaccine. Japan, Australia, and accounted for fewer than 1 percent of cases but had options on 1 billion doses, at the time when this report was written.

The researchers projected that 13 major vaccine manufacturers working on coronavirus vaccines had the potential capacity for close to 6 billion courses of vaccine by the end of 2021.

"High-income countries have reserved just over half of these vaccine doses from 13 leading vaccine manufacturers. Low and middle-income countries have the remainder, despite these countries comprising more than 85 percent of the world's population," they wrote.

"Even if all 13 of these vaccine manufacturers were to succeed in reaching their maximum production capacity, at least a fifth of the world's population would not have access to vaccines until 2022," they wrote further.

The team noted that the COVAX Facility could play a key role in ensuring access to Covid-19 vaccines. "However, its target of two billion doses by the end of 2021 is still short on premarket vaccine commitments and financing to deliver on this goal," the team noted.

As per the latest updates by Johns Hopkins University, Covid-19 cases worldwide stand at 73,476,721 and 1,635,464 deaths. (ANI)